What Do We Need From Technology & Ourselves?
Technology has enabled the massification of people through mass media. Media is an interface between people in apprehending the actions of the world. We are no longer only interested in our own tribe, although most of us remain instinctually tribal.
We no longer make a life for ourselves, at least not one recognized and respected by what we might cynically call neighbours. What is made impacts a wider range of people, but the communication channel mostly goes in just one direction: from the top to the mass below.
This begins to unravel what feeds the increasing civil unrest in the United States. The pursuit of individual greatness insights meritocracy and not everyone can play a meaningful part, if but to become a pioneer, but such paths also lead to isolation and anguish.
Technology today can achieve far more with less effort than it did ten years ago, and in theory this can empower everyone to do more, and have more meaningful relationships, but the bridge does not yet seem complete.
Games become more attractive in such environments because the rules offer a level playing field and abilities and character can be built. Same too with religion, there may be never ending debates over the interpretation of one verse or another, but the score remains within the same symphony, and the habit and ritualization of the cycles affirms communal security.
What technology we create can work toward matching or complementing and then strengthening individual interests within a group that is ideally small, but is also connected to larger institutions if the interests are wide in scope.
Signifying this gap continuously wants identifying, but moreso it wants to be fulfilled. This human need is the fuel that has made such supreme social media platforms. We want to be liked for what we like, and share what we do, and be gratefully acknowledged, but because the status gap can never be filled, perhaps even especially once we’ve achieved mechanics that fully exceed us mentally and physically.
Solace may be found in reminding ourselves the amalgamation, however austere, however fiercely superior to ourselves, is but a combination of human endeavor.
Places of mutual construction such as hackspaces and startup incubators should be given the greatest of our resources. And those institutions need to focus on how to make our lives something far more enriching than excellence. My hope is that more women, especially grandmothers, get involved in these spaces.
So what are your thoughts and what actions are you planning to undertake? Seriously, I would like to know. You would too and so would many others.